Two months ago I bought a Fitbit Charge. I was a little concerned about the 150ish dollar price tag given that there was a high probability that it would end up in the back of my drawer with all the other weight loss and exercise gizmos I’ve bought over the years, but I polled my friends and many gave it very positive reviews and I was fortunate enough to have a Costco gift card so that helped.
I have to admit that I struggled a bit with the set up, but part of that was…ahem…user error. Once I got it set up I put it on and immediately it started tracking my steps, flights of stairs climbed, distance traveled and calories burned. When you sync it to your computer or mobile device the basic dashboard lets me put in my weight loss goals, enter my food and water intake, it tells me when I am active during the workday and it even monitors my sleep patterns. There are a number of other functions as well like alarms and caller ID, however using these additional features can drain the battery much sooner than the 7-10 days they claim in the Fitbit literature. I can also add my friends to my dashboard and compare steps with them on a daily basis, cheer them on and send them notes of encouragement. You can also send a jeer to your friends which I have to admit I don’t like because trash talking people who are making an effort is well crappy in my book.
There are a few drawbacks to the Fitbit Charge like you can’t get it wet so yesterday when I was doing dishes and other chores around the house I had it off for the majority of the day so I tallied very few steps and sometimes it doesn’t acknowledge stairs, but I have found that you have do a certain number of stairs at a specific pace to get credit.
I am actually on my second Fitbit Charge as the first one was only lasting a couple of days between battery charges which wasn’t really so bad, but wasn’t what the company promised. I was encouraged by a friend of a friend to contact the company and they were swift to respond, even on a Saturday night, and after a few simple questions to confirm my warranty was still good they sent me a new Fitbit Charge within a week. I’m testing it now, but so far it’s gone 5 days on one battery charge and according to my dashboard the battery is about half way.
I am working on losing weight and have lost a bit on my own, but with the Fitbit Charge I am already starting to notice changes in my appearance and most definitely changes in my behaviour. For instance I’ve started making more trips around the office instead of waiting until I had a bunch of stuff to deliver, I’ve started stepping in place while reading correspondence and I even popped in my earbuds and went for a walk at lunch the other day. It wasn’t a long walk, but it helped boost my steps for the day and it did wonders for my self esteem. In fact one of the most pleasant surprises was noticing just how many steps I was already getting in on a typical day and then being able to track my efforts to improve upon that. So often I feel like I have to make a special effort to go to the gym or make time for a marathon walk and if I can’t fit that in then the day is lost. My Fitbit Charge is showing me that every step, be it to the gym or around the grocery store is a step in the right direction.
Given the money I have spent on potions and tinctures and various doodads to lose weight over the years the Fitbit Charge is well worth the money, but I do have to admit for the average person on a budget the $150ish price tag is pretty steep. If you are in a position to put a little money aside though I think it is a wise investment.
I give it 8 goddesses out of 10.
– the Goddess